I just love herbs- in cooking they are wonderful, but so expensive to buy that I almost never do. Here’s a great herb garden– and one that will look lush for the whole summer…
Herb gardens in containers like this are as easy as– well, let me put it this way– pie is much harder.
First, get a very large container– this one was about 24 inches in diameter. If there are no drainage holes, drill a few holes in the bottom (you can use something else if you don’t have a drill, but get yourself a drill, they’re darn useful.) Dump in a bag of potting soil– fill the pot about three quarters full, then arrange the herbs in the container, while they are in their own containers (before you knock them out) to get a pleasing arrangement.
Here, we have (clockwise from 12:00)
Chives, Sweet Basil, Lemon Thyme, Prostrate Rosemary (creeping Rosemary), Bicolored culinary sage, dill, and then an opal basil in the center.
Once arranged, knock them out of their pots, put them in the container, top up the soil to cover the plants rootballs and water. That’s it.
Most of the herbs came from the Madison Wednesday farmers market, but you can buy herbs at any decent greenhouse. The exceptions (dill and chives) came from my garden, where Dill lives up to its reputation as a weed.
To take care of your container herb garden, make sure you water it a lot. As it should be in full sun, it probably doesn’t hurt to water every day– or every other. You can check to see if the plants need water by inserting your finger into the potting soil to a depth of about 3 inches– but you are unlikely to overwater an outside container plant. They get dry VERY quickly.
The other important thing with a potted herb garden- even more so than a regular herb garden is to use it. Herbs will look infinitely better if you continue to pinch them back (cut off the tops) and use the leaves. In a container, you want to keep the herbs manageably sized, so enjoy a caprese salad with summer tomatoes and your own home-grown basil, or a thyme-rubbed pork roast on the grill, or dilled salmon… I need to stop now, because I’m getting hungry. Enjoy!